Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Find your power pose

As a teenager, I played a lot of video games. I'd spend hours every evening in a darkened room, transfixed by the computer screen, oblivious to everything and everyone around me. As well as being a killer for my social life, this habit also caused me to develop a terrible posture. I'd slump forward, neck craned towards the screen, my back drooped like a wilting branch.

I stopped playing games when I was 18, but the terrible posture stayed with me. I knew I should sit up straight and stand up tall, but my muscles were so well trained (or so poorly trained) that I soon gave up whenever I tried to change my posture. It just felt so hard and I didn't see any real benefit. Sure I might avoid wrecking my back when I'm older, but right now, why should I care?

Recently I cracked it. I've found a reason to correct my posture: power. I was at a public speaking training day on the weekend, and the coach pounced on me. "You're letting all your energy, all your power drain out of you! Stand up tall and say it again." I stood up tall and I said it again and the difference was incredible. I felt strong, powerful, confident. The same words had twice the impact. It felt like I was sending out a wave of energy to the audience, and they responded.

I noticed another thing. This training day went from 8am to 10pm: 14 hours. It was full on. A lot of action, a lot of participation. Normally I'd be so tired, I wouldn't be able to absorb anything after 8 hours. But I discovered that all I had to do to remain completely focused and present was to sit up straight.

It all makes sense now. Having poor posture is a vicious cycle. When I slump forward, I let the energy seep out of me and that causes me to slump even further. The only way to break out is to get into my power pose.

Have you found your power pose? Do you stand up tall and let the world see your brilliance?

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